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  NTLDR missing.. Press CTL+ALT+DEL to restart 
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jagpal sidhu May 12, 2005, 11:30pm EDT Report Abuse
i install windows xp sp2 on my cuzins computer and my net wasnt working soo i waas gonna try installing windows xp pro sp1 but it would boot for some reason and then i installed partition magic and i made another drive and restart my computer and started getting a message "NTLDR missing.. Press CTL+ALT+DEL to restart'" i did tha same thing came i then tried booting from windows xp cd and it didnt boot then i took the harddrive put it in my computer and formated it and made a new partition named drive g: using partitionmagic and then put it back in my cuzins comp and i still got the same msg i tried putting the ntldr file in the drive with my comp and when i did tha i got a error please insert disk in drive and press enter so i formated the drive with my comp agian and got the ntldr missing msg agian and i tried booting and still got the same msg and i dont have a floppy drive so i cant use a floppy disk ive been trying different theing for tha last week every day wasting a few hours. so some 1 please help me : )

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Greg M May 12, 2005, 11:39pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
I think that you accidentally changed the drive of windows. You probably will have to go in and change boot.ini... but I don't remember how.
Should be something like:
Disk(0) Rdisk(0) Multi(0) Partition(0 or 1 or 2)

Hopefully someone can help me out here. But I believe that you will need some sort of tool to edit it... I'm not sure what.

FX-55, 2x 1GB GSkill, X1800XT (512MB), 2x250GB RAID-0, DFI SLI-D <-My 'project' <-Web games!
PCGEEK May 12, 2005, 11:39pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
most the time i see this its just a matter of selecting the right HDD in boot priority in bios .

I get this all the time after i jumpered my bios .

Brendan Falvey May 13, 2005, 01:28am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
Boot.ini is a system file and can only be seen as an administrator. you need to copy it, edit if necessary and then save and replace the old one. there are numerous articles on M$ knowledgebase on modding boot.ini remember it is read only and it should be returned that way. Screw it and you are also

jagpal sidhu May 13, 2005, 03:31pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
is boot.ini a windows file becuz if it is i formated tha hardrive using my computer. is there anything i can do to jus reinstall windows or change something in the bios

jagpal sidhu May 14, 2005, 01:21am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
i booted up with a windows 98 start up disk using my cd drive and deleted the partition and made a new 1and i am now getting a missing operating system but i cant boot using a windows xp cd :$

varun rao May 14, 2005, 01:41am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
then its not a bootable CD.

Try this, go to and download the XP start up floppy image. Shift those files onto a floppy, place the cd in the drive, then select floppy as first boot device, CDROM as second.
It will work.

oops just read that u dont have a floppy drive!!...

ok install BASIC windows 98 (will do in 15 minutes) then put in the XP cd and perform an upgrade.

Eric Atkinson Jul 07, 2005, 01:00am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
Hi Jagpal,
You'll have to go into BIOS setup to change the boot device order to make CDROM as the first boot device before your computer will boot from the CD ROM

If you have set CDROM as first boot device & it still not booting, then you probably have a copied XP CD which doesn't boot.

In this case, boot the computer with the Win 98 boot disk and choose with CD support at the boot menu. After booting to dos prompt, change to the CDROM (d: and hit enter), change to the i386 directory (cd i386 and hit enter). Then type winnt32 and hit enter. This will start the windows XP installation program. Just follow the prompt from this point onwards.

Good luck.

Doing a job RIGHT the first time gets the job done. Doing the job WRONG 14 times gives you job security.
ranelle sharma Jul 15, 2005, 12:13am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
I have a Windows XP Home Edition. And i keep getting this message wen i try to log on.

NTLDR Is Missing
Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete to restart

I dont have a floppy drive thing. I dont have any of the cds that came with it. Sry i guess my dad lost it.

Brendan Falvey Jul 15, 2005, 01:33am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart

you seem to have a real problem. normally you would need to repair the XP installation with this message. the easiest way is to get a bootable XP CD and boot from it and follow the prompts and when the system asks to repair let it check everything. There are other ways but this is the easiest first up. beg borrow or steal that CD. Other ways include DOS like command utilities both m$ and third party.

ranelle sharma Jul 15, 2005, 04:55pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
OK, Cant i like download teh cd online and then burn it to another blank cd? Isnt there a way to do it without the regular cd? Cant i burn it to a blank one? Whats the DOS way?

Afrow UK Jul 15, 2005, 07:39pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
NTLDR is a hidden file that sits on your system root (usually C:).
You will get this error message if you delete or rename NTLDR.

What I did to fix this (after deleting it thinking it was junk) I simply installed another copy of Windows XP on another partition and from there I had two options. 1. Make a new NTLDR file with notepad or 2. copy NTLDR from the new Windows XP install across.


I like: Programming, Gym, University
Music: House, Dubstep, D&B, Trance, Metal
ranelle sharma Jul 17, 2005, 02:22pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
Why don't you give me the NTLDR file. Cause i cant find it.

Ecosse Jul 17, 2005, 03:30pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
It's a possibility that you can get this kind of message if you partition & format a drive using the likes of Maxtor's own CD partition tool - they even tell you about it in the darn manual!

The resolve is simple - set all bios booting priorities to CDROM - on mine this was simply:

If your machine will not allow this to happen then go for the likes of CDROM, SCSI, Zip - as long as the system is not at all looking at you HDD - I know this seems a little odd but the system gets what it needs at first boot then you just reboot - reset bios then you're away

Worked for me only last weekend.

Good luck.


Specs here > > > > >
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Afrow UK Jul 17, 2005, 03:54pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
I don't need to send you the NTLDR file. You just need to recreate it. You should be able to do this successfully through the recovery console from Windows setup.
Once in there, you need to type:

cd \
(and press enter, then...)
copy con NTLDR

(press enter). Then press CTRL and Z and you'll get a ^Z on the screen. Press Enter and it will save the file.
Restart and everything should be o.k.


I like: Programming, Gym, University
Music: House, Dubstep, D&B, Trance, Metal
Richard Franklin Feb 15, 2007, 01:46pm EST Report Abuse
>> NTLDR is missing
Ok i have really messed up my other computer... last night turned on my computer and it came up NTLDR is missing so then i put in a reinstallation cd windows xp pro and i installed it so now all of my files have gone and i can't connect to the internet .. if anyone could please post some suggestions i would be very grateful!!

venkat narayana Dec 14, 2007, 12:19am EST Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
This problem may occur if the basic input/output system (BIOS) on your computer is outdated, or if one or more of the following Windows boot files are missing or damaged:
To resolve this issue, verify that the BIOS on your computer is current, and then use one or more of the following methods, as appropriate to your situation, to repair the Windows 2000 startup environment.Use a Boot Disk to Start the Computer
1. Create a Windows 2000 boot disk that contains the following files:
Ntbootdd.sys .
Insert the boot disk into the computer's floppy disk drive, and then restart the computer.
4. Copy the Ntldr file, the file, and the Boot.ini file from the boot disk to the system partition of the local hard disk
Thatz it.
Use the Recovery Console
1. Use the Windows 2000 Setup disks to restart the computer, or use the Windows 2000 CD-ROM to restart the computer.
2. At the Welcome to Setup screen, press R to repair the Windows 2000 installation.
3. Press C to repair the Windows 2000 installation by using the Recovery Console.
4. Type the number that corresponds to the Windows installation that you want to repair, and then press ENTER. For example, type 1, and then press ENTER.
5) Type the Administrator password, and then press ENTER.
6. Type map, and then press ENTER. Note the drive letter that is assigned to the CD-ROM drive that contains the Windows 2000 CD-ROM.
7. Type the following commands, pressing ENTER after you type each one, where drive is the drive letter that you typed in step 4 of "Method 2: Use the Recovery Console," of this article:
copy drive:\i386\ntldr c:\

copy drive:\i386\ c:\
If you are prompted to overwrite the file, type y, and then press ENTER.

Jason Reed Jan 22, 2009, 10:06pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
How to fix: NTLDR is missing, press any key to restart
If you got this on Windows Vista
Windows Vista does not boot like previous versions, you can keep reading my page to boot into an existing installation of 98/NT/2000/XP, but if you have just a single Vista install and nothing else, "" has a fantastic article on "Recovering the Windows Vista Bootloader from the DVD" and an awesome program called EasyBCD. It looks like they are doing great things over there for getting the problem resolved on Vista.

If you got this on Windows XP (or Windows 2000, or NT4, or Windows 98)
Keep Reading.

What happened? (How NTLDR works and why your PC can't find it)
When your computer starts, the BIOS attempts to find the primary hard drive's active partition to read the first sector for the MBR (Master Boot Record), it uses that info to load the rest of the OS. For Windows NT4/2k/XP the MBR is pointed to the NTLDR (New Technology Loader) and it takes it from there. If you get the "NTLDR is missing, press any key to restart" what's most likely going on is the BIOS either didn't look for the right drive, didn't find the right partition, it wasn't active, didn't find the MBR, or the MBR didn't list NTLDR in the right place, the location of NTLDR changed, or you are looking at a hardware failure situation (memory/cables/drive/motherboard/etc).

The first thing to do is try to change back whatever hardware or software change you just made (this could be as simple as leaving a floppy disk in the drive or you need to reseat the cables). If the contents of the drive are especially important and you have no backups, I would recommend removing the hard drive, placing in an enclosure, and backing up the data first, in fact, backup all of your computers. (What if I made new changes that I want to keep?).

Make a NTLDR boot disk to get back into Windows.
The quick test to make sure your OS installation is still good is to create an MBR and NTLDR on a floppy disk and check if you can just boot back up into your system, this disk will check many of the partitions for a working windows installation. Here are the instructions to do this:

1. Get a blank floppy/cd-r/usb (whatever is on it will be erased), and put it into a working computer.

2. If you have a working Windows machine download my fix: Floppy fixntldr.exe | CD-R | USB onto a working computer
(What if I don't want to download a file from a website I don't trust?). (64 bit WinXP Floppy 64ntflop.exe | CD-R | Files
Do you remember if the broken computers had the Windows installation in "Windows"? If you can't remember just keep going (What if it was not named Windows but WINNT like in NT4 or 2000?) .
(If your backup system is NT4 or Windows 2000: What if my backup system is Mac / Linux or another alt OS?).

3. Make the new boot disk:
*Floppy: Run the fixntldr.exe file by double clicking it. Click OK to overwrite the blank floppy disc in the working computer, you should see some screens about writing a new floppy disk. (If you don't like running an exe from me, you can run and just replace the RawRite.exe file inside with one you trust) (now go to step 4)
*CD-R: This is not a normal file you burn to a CD, it is an "ISO" file, you must first extract the file by right clicking it and choosing "Extract All" then Next>Next>Finish then download a program called "ISO Recorder" from here (Windows 2000 users use Active ISO Burner IsoBurner-Setup.exe) and install it. Once it's installed, right click the fixntldr.iso file and choose to "Copy image to CD" or "Burn ISO file" and let it burn the cd (now go to step 4)
*USB: Right click the file and choose "Extract All" Next>Next>Finish
Then Insert your USB Stick into the working computer (remove any other USB sticks, and be sure there isn't anything on the USB stick that you want since we are about to erase it);
Double-click HPUSBFW.EXE in the ntldrusb folder;
Check "Create a DOS startup disk" and "using DOS system files located at" then press the grey button with the "...";
A box will come up asking you which folder to select, point it to the "dos system files" folder;
Press OK; Press Start; Press Yes; Let it run for just a few minutes till a new box comes up; Press OK; Press Close;
Open the "putonusb" folder, copy all the files, paste them onto the usb stick (just in the root of the drive, like E:\);
Eject the USB Stick; Remove it from your computer;
Place it into the computer with the "NTLDR is missing" issue, reboot it.
You will see the Windows 98 screen pop up for a second, then you will see a black screen with white letters prompting you to "replace boot sector of the drive C: (y/n)", press the y key;
It will go to a C:\ prompt, reboot the computer by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Del; (now go to step 4)

4. Put the new floppy/cd-r/usb you have just created into the computer that gets the NTLDR is missing error message, turn the broken computer off.

Using the boot disk in the computer with the "NTLDR is missing" error.
Start back up the broken computer with the floppy/cd-r/usb inside it/plugged into it. Once your computer gets past the BIOS screen your computer should try to access the boot disk and you should see a black screen with white letters (What if I don't see this screen?). that says:

1ST TRY THIS seleccione esto primero
2ND TRY THIS essayez ceci en deuzieme
3RD TRY THIS wahlen Sie diesen Third
4TH TRY THIS selezioni questo fourth
5TH TRY THIS selecione este fifth
6TH TRY THIS seleccione este sexto
7TH TRY THIS essayez ceci en septieme
8TH TRY THIS wahlen Sie dieses achte
9TH TRY THIS selezioni questo nono
10TH TRY THIS selecione este decimo

(I threw in some Spanish / French / German / Italian / Portuguese for international flavor.)

This file is set up to automatically select the "1ST TRY THIS" choice after 30 seconds. Try it first, if it was the wrong selection, you will likely get one of these four errors:

1. Windows could not start because file "<Windows Root>\system32\hal.dll was missing or corrupt

2. Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem. Could not read from the selected boot disk. Check boot path and disk hardware. Please check the Windows documentation about hardware disk configuration and your hardware reference manuals for additional information.

3. I/O Error accessing boot sector file multi(0)disk(0)fdisk(0)\BOOTSECT.DOS

4. Immediate reboot

If you get the immediate reboot or some other weird error, try pressing F8 at the "1st Try This" selection screen, it will give you a prompt where you can select Safe Mode, and then try the "1st Try This" option again. Safe Mode is a special "minimal" version of Windows that doesn't load certain parts of the operating system that might have caused the problem.

One of the choices should eventually boot you back into Windows. (What if none of the options worked?) .

Use windows to fix the boot files on the hard drive.
If you got back into Windows, stop whatever you are doing and backup your most important information from this computer.

Now that you are done backing up the most important info, try to change back whatever you were last doing and boot normally, it that doesn't work, put the floppy back into the broken computer and double click the fixntldr.bat file on the floppy drive, if it asks you to overwrite a file, just type in y for yes (the file copies boot.ini, ntldr, from the floppy to the C:\ drive and removes the read only attributes). That process take a few minutes, then remove the floppy and reboot.

If you are using the cd or usb solution, copy the boot.ini, ntldr, and files to My Computer > Local Disk C:\ > and overwite whatever files might be there, then right click each file, choose properties, uncheck the Read Only attribute, and click OK.

If you get back into Windows again, you can change that "1st Try This" menu by going into Start > Control Panel > PerformanceAndMaintenance/System > Advanced tab > Startup and Recovery section, Settings button > System Startup; then change the "Default Operating System:" to the selection that worked for you, and change the box that says "Time to display list of operating systems" to however many seconds you want (usually 1 second). Click OK twice. (screenshots)

If you copy the file over and boot up and get a "NTLDR is compressed" error message, be sure to uncheck "compress contents to save space" on the hard drive.

(What if the bootdisk worked, but I can't get into Windows without it?) .

(What if I want to do further research?) . (Can I read other peoples questions and your answers? Sure: )

Jules Jan 23, 2009, 03:04am EST Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
NTLDR is missing is a common message on older computers that would appear if you had a data storage floppy (non bootable disk) in the floppy disk drive, (and the bios was set to boot off the floppy.)
The solution was to remove the floppy.

In a recent computer with no floppy disk drive:
If your bios was set to boot off say the CD with a CD in it containing only data or a flash disk that simply contained data, then you would possibly get the same message. (Or you can get a message to insert a system disk and press any key to re-start)

The quick solution is to remove any CD's, flash disks, USB printers etc etc. then boot up.

A better solution would be to boot into the BIOS and set it to boot off the C: (if that is where your operating system is.

When doing a clean install it would be a good idea to remove all peripherals like USB printers, and flash disks, memory sticks, and external hard drives. Also use PS2 mouse and keyboard if possible, Only have the Hard drive and the Optical drive (CD) connected. Set the BIOS to boot off the CD. At the start of the installation you will be asked to format the disk and you should do this.

Only read the manual as a last resort.
lorenzo august May 26, 2010, 01:17am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
that info helped alot thanks . :)

lorenzo august May 26, 2010, 10:47am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: NTLDR missing.. Press CTL ALT DEL to restart
try to change ur boot sequence in bios...:)



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